welcome to nhk world "newsline." japan's prime minister is on his way to one of his most important meetings of the year. shinzo abe is flying to washington for his first talks with u.s. president barack obama since he took office in december. their agenda is packed and their discussions are expected to touch on everything from a wide-ranging free trade deal to punishing north korea. >> translator: i want the summit talks to show the international community that japan and the united states have restored the strong bond of their alliance.
>> abe says that alliance became unstable during the former democratic party-led administration. he says he's going to talk to obama about the u.s.-led negotiations for the transpacific partnership. nations that joined the discussions for the free trade agreement are supposed to in principle eliminate all tariffs, but abe doesn't want to abide by the precondition. abe and obama are expected to share ideas on what to do about north korea. scientists in the country last week carried out their third nuclear test. they are agreed to push for a nuclear resolution imposing new sanctions on pyongyang. government officials say the prime minister will tell the president that he will implement a bilateral security agreement dating back to 2006. that deal calls for the relocation of the u.s. marine corps put enma air station within the prefecture to a less populated area in the city of nago. u.s. researchers say authorities in north korea may
be ready to conduct another underground nuclear test. they have detected more activity at a facility in the country's northeast. a team from johns hopkins university released a report showing the latest satellite photos. one of the pictures was taken on february 13th, a day after the test. the other was taken two days after that. the researchers say the first photo shows no movement around the site. they speculate that personnel stayed away until they could confirm radiation levels were safe. the second picture shows an entrance to a tunnel covered with nets along with some people in vehicles. the researchers believe workers were removed data and equipment from the site and they say they noticed a new road near another tunnel. authorities in pyongyang have given a hero's welcome to those who carried out the test. officials from the ruling workers party invited engineers
to the capital. state-run television show "the big welcome." analysts say they were drawing up solidarity. kim jong un has drawn his soldiers up for battle. he wants to penalize north korea for the test. the state-run tv reported kim visited an air force unit with senior officers of the korean people's army. he presented soldiers with commemorative binoculars and a rifle. then he watched paratroopers train. kim urged the commanders to remember the deeds of his late father and grandfather. he ordered them to increase combat capabilities and prepare for war. u.s. computer security experts have linked the chinese military to a -- but chinese leaders insist they are not to
blame. michio kijima reports. >> reporter: hackers have more in u.s. firms and have hit a range of targets including air space, energy and information technology companies. some are household names such as apple, facebook and twitter. managers at the firms revealed this month they were hit by hackers. someone stole the computer passwords of employees last year from the new york times. >> that point we were pretty certain there were some hackers in our network and the fbi said, as did at&t, this had all the hallmarks of hacking by the chinese military. >> reporter: officials at the department of homeland security pulled up some numbers to illustrate what's happening. they say hackers just hit nine u.s. firms in 2009. two years later that figure jumped to 198. analysts at a computer security
firm called andiant blame a unit of a chinese military. the analysts issued this report exposing one of chinese es tee i can't imagine united and refer to hackers nope as advanced persistent threat. and they say the groups conducting these activities are based primarily in china and they say the chinese government is aware of them. the analysts say a group known as apt1 has targeted nearly 150 victims over seven years, institutions and companies around the world. they concluded that the group is likely government sponsored. they traced apt1 to four computer networks in shanghai. the analysts linked two of the networks to a unit of the people's liberation army. unit commanders are said to recruit students with computer skills who are fluent in english. their believed to have recruited several hundred to several thousand members. u.s. law enforcement officials have launched a campaign to
crack down on those stealing trade secrets. >> as critical technologies have advanced, criminals have adapted accordingly. our need to keep pace with these changes remains imperative and the stakes have never really been higher. >> reporter: chinese government officials say they are not involved. they say many of the attacks come from the u.s. >> translator: china has also been targeted by hackers. it's irresponsible and unprofessional to make accusations. it does not help in resolving the hacking issue. >> now our enemies are also seeking the ability to sabotage our power grid. >> reporter: u.s. president barack obama issued an execive order to protect u.s. infrastructure. he and other leaders have raised most of their concerns with the chinese in private. the report can serve as a more public warning to beijing. michio kijima, nhk world, tokyo. u.s. researchers are
concerned about another risk. members of a congressional think tank say the u.s. could become involved if japan and china were to engage in a military conflict. the two sides are arguing over islands in the east china sea. japan controls the senkaku islands, china claims them. the reportish shud on u.s./japan relations ahead of the trip to washington by shinzo abe. they say they targeted radar on a japanese destroyer. the report says it is not clear whether chinese leaders or officers ordered the radar lock or if the radar operator made the decision. the u.s. officials have reaffirmed that the japan/u.s. security treaty covers the islands. the report says that could draw in the u.s. military in the event of a con fligt. a new life-sized foundation in the u.s. has awarded $3 million in prizes to each of the 11 researchers including a
japanese nobel laureate. the new award is worth twice the nobel prize. professor shinya yamanaka received the prize for his work in stem cells. the break through prize of life sciences was created to recognize research to treat hard to recognize diseases. mark zuckerberg launched the prize along with google's co founder and apple's chairman arthur levinson. they are calling this the largest ever award in the field. professor yamanaka is honored to have been awarded the prize and expresses deep appreciation to colleagues and family. he would also like to begin clinical trials for ips cells and put them into practical use.
many japanese were starting to feel optimistic about the future of the nation's economy with the new prime minister, but prices at the pump are putting a damper on things. ron madison is here with the latest on that. >> it is times like these when i'm glad i don't have a car, but people like you and other drivers are feeling the pinch now because gas prices have been increasing for at least the past two months now. japanese government surveys asked questions of major wholesalers about the higher retail prices of gasoline and kerosene. the agency is concerned about excessive prizes caused by the weaker yen to push-up the cost of natural imports. the energy agency officials summoned executives of oil wholesalers on thursday asking executives about their company's cost for crude oil imports, the volume of gasoline shipments as well as inventories. now the average retail price of regular gasoline climbed for an 11th straight week. the price of kerosene has also risen for a 12th week in a row. the president of the japanese
oil wholesalers organization says he will instruct member companies to explain more fully to consumers why they have to raise prices. >> translator: we have been making it a point to set prices in accord dance with changes in the markets. that insures fairness and transparency. oil companies should explain to customers like crude oil prices and the trend of the weak yen. these factors are behind the prices. >> he also gave his forecast that crude oil prices will likely remain high for a while. government officials from japan, china and south korea have agreed to start negotiating a free trade deal. substantial talks from the outset are expected to start as early as next month. the agreement came after a preparatory meeting for the fda talks. officials agreed to put on the table tariff reductions on industrial and farm products and
the investment rules. they confirmed they would hold three rounds of negotiations this year. round one is expected to be held in south korea from late march to early april. all right. let's get a check to see how things are looking on the markets. we do start in europe right now where all the majors are seeing pretty steep declines down from the open sharply right now. we are seeing london's ftse 100 lower by 1.6%. we have declines of almost 1.9% for the frankfurt market. paris' cac40 losing 1.8%, 3,642. moving on to what happened in asia, share prices also fell across the board. china's plan to curb property purchases fueled negative sentiment as well. shanghai really leading the decliners here today, that was down almost 3%. hong kong's shares fell 1.7%. the nikkei seeing a decline of 1.4%. and that was on the slight reversal of the weak yen that we
saw. speaking of currencies, here's what's going on right now. we have dollar/yen little changed right now. we are seeing a bit of strength, though, actually for the japanese yen in london trading. investors remain caution ahead of the government's proposed candidate for the next bank of japan governor. possibly next week we are seeing dollar/yen at 93.10. the euro has been losing a bit of ground as well against the yen. traders are waiting for the results of the general election in italy this weekend. it's now at 122.73. well, good news for gamers today. sony says it will launch a playstation video game console with brand new features later on this year. japanese electronics maker hopes the first new model in seven years will revitalize sluggish sales of game consoles, smart phones and tablets are dominating the market for games. >> this is the foundation of our next generation platform. the playstation 4. >> sony computer entertainment, a sony group company, made the
announcement in new york. the model will hit the market in time for the year-end holiday season. the new controller has a touch pad for easy operation. the technology enables users to play online. users can also download game software to smart phones and tablets and also share game screens through social network sites. well, speaking of advertisements in japan, they rose last year for the first time in five years marking a rebound from the plummet we saw in the aftermath of the 2011 disaster. executives at advertising agencies say $63 billion was spent on advertisements in 2012. that's up just 3%. when you calculate it in yen from the previous year, that is. the london olympics last year also gave a bit of a boost to ad spending. spending on internet ads grew the most at 8% there thanks to the rising popularity of smart phones. ads on tv saw an increase 3%
while newspapers just over 4% there. dentsu says the trend is expected to continue due to the government's stimulus measures. japanese business leaders want the government to encourage more business in africa. they drafted senate proposals to help companies do business on the continent. the representative of the japan association of corporate executives presented the proposal to a senior foreign ministry official. the executives say africa has developed into an attractive investment destination but they do warn of a widening gap in wealth and a shortage of skilled workers. they are calling on the governor to accept more african students and trainees and to help improve social infrastructure on the continent. they also urged officials to increase intelligence gathering following last month's hostage crisis in algeria where ten japanese workers were killed. officials have invited african leaders to tokyo for an international conference in june on development in the region. japan has been hosting this
conference every five years since 1993. all right. that's going to wrap it up for biz this hour. let's get you a check of the markets. police in india detained two men for a crime that's reignited anger about sexual violence. someone raped and murdered three girls. three sisters disappeared in the district of bhandara a week ago
ages 6, 9 and 11. police found their bodies on saturday. they had been dumped in a well. villagers took to the streets to protest against the crime. in december a group of men gang-raped a woman on a bus in new delhi. she died weeks later at the age of 23. this sparked protests across the country as they say police were not doing enough to protect women. government leaders approved harsher punishments for rapists including the death penalty in some cases and ordered police to conduct more thorough investigations on sexual crimes. relations between the united states and iran remain tense but wrestlers from the two nations are uniting for a common cause. they have joined wrestling officials from eight other countries to keep the sport in the olympic games. the officials held a meeting in iran's capital tehran during the wrestling world cup tournament.
representatives from japan were also there. they called the meeting after the international olympic committee announced they may drop wrestling from the 2012 games. this provided a rare show of unity between the u.s. and iran. they suspended diplomatic relations three years ago as they deteriorated further over iran's nuclear program. >> one country can't win this fight alone. it's all the wrestling nations of the world coming together with the international federation to make sure that the international olympic committee understands the importance and the relevance that wrestling has in the world. >> officials discussing filing a petition with the ioc to keep wrestling in the games. education officials in japan have been reminding teachers across the country to obey the law. corporate punishment is illegal but some teachers still hit their students. in one case, a high school student committed suicide because he was so upset about
the abuse. corporal punishment is a source of debate in many countries. people in some american states are pushing for a ban. nhk world has the story. >> reporter: parents and educators in north carolina have argued for years about whether it's ever right to hit a child. the state is one of 19 in which corporal punishment is legal. earlier this month officials with the state board of education passed a resolution opposing the practice in public schools. >> all those in favor? >> aye. >> although opposed? >> no. >> 10-1, okay. >> the resolution is non-binding but the people of the board of education want lawmakers in the state legislature to bancorp ral punishment.
>> the education governing body in the state of north carolina thinks that administering corporal punishment is not appropriate. we hope that the general assembly will reconsider. >> reporter: people on the street have lined up on different sides of the debate. >> some truly need a good spanking. i think it's a good thing as long as it's not in excess. >> i don't think it's up to the public school system to ever touch a child inappropriately. and that's very inappropriate. >> reporter: some cite examples of excessive punishment, including a case at a school in tennessee. sandra hall's son lucas started kindergarten last august. after eight days in school, he came home with bruises on his buttocks. >> i cried. i cried. i knew it was red when he came
home. >> reporter: hall confronted the principal who spanked her son. the principal, penny boyd, said she had punished him for throwing crayons at other children. hall took her complaint to the district attorney. police arrested the principal boyd. a grand jury indicted her last month for child abuse. she'll return to court in june. >> as a trained professional, i think you should be trained on proper spanking. but my son never got spanked. my son was beat. so i'm 100% against it. >> reporter: corporal punishment is legal in tennessee. still, some school administrators have decided to ban it.
wendell marlow is a principal of a middle school. he's kept this paddle for over 30 years. four years ago he decided not to use it anymore. >> most of my parents at this point in time that have children here do not feel like corporal punishment is appropriate anymore. they feel like that it's better to talk to the child. and it is just not worth it anymore. >> reporter: is corporal punishment just a form of child abuse or an effective means of discipline? controversial cases like the one involving 5-year-old lucas are once again sparking the debate in america. widad franco, nhk world, new york. operators of an english language school in new zealand have meheld a memorial service r
those killed in the earthquake years ago. 128 people died including 28 japanese. families of the victims attended the ceremony at a park at central christ church. many students died when the building that houses their language school collapsed. the attendants read out the names of the victims and planted a tree in their memory. >> translator: this ceremony does not end our grief. on the contrary, this tree may even renew our sorrow. but i want to see this tree grow. >> the city of christ church will hold another memorial service on friday. a cyclone is currently affecting the coast of madagascar. meteorologist robert speta is joining us with the forecast. >> yes, gene, we have been watching this for a few days
create havoc across portions of madagascar with the rain pushing onshore. farther to the west near mozambique, you are seeing continuous flooding from this storm and moisture from the past several weeks. this is just going to be making the situation that much worse. the winds are now at 148 kilometers per hour, a category 1, weak category 2 equivalent of a hurricane if it was out in the atlantic. but it is starting to push off to the east. there are some towns here or cities along the southwestern portions of madagascar to be at highest risk for storm surge and flooding as it does push overhead. it will gradually weaken after it pushes out farther to the east, but definitely a very serious situation to watch the next several days, and not just here in madagascar but the moisture flow here i was talking about farther to the north, over 100 deaths have been reported here in the last several weeks. so this is something we need to watch here throughout the next several days. but not just there, we are talking about the tropics in the
southern hemisphere but we have a tropical depression pushing across the philippines. a very weak one not close to the intensity of aruna in the southern hemisphere, but this one is creating very heavy rains, already two deaths being reported here in eastern mendenou. remember back in december the typhoon came ashore. still a widespread devastation as they continue to recover here. unfortunately, very grim news, both of the deaths were reported of people trying to swim across rivers. definitely, if you are in one of the areas with the waters raging and the rainfall coming down, stay out of the waters and don't try to risk it. not just here in the philippines but out in vietnam you'll see heavy rainfall throughout the next 48 to 72 hours. something to watch out for that. switches gears, we are talking about the tropics in eastern asia out across much of north america. the big story is a winter storm. a classic one setting up here. we have a lot of cold air coming in from the north. warm, moist air surging in from the south across kansas through
missouri and even into chicago. you're going to be seeing heavy snowfall. eastern kansas, upwards of 50 centimeters of snow accompanied by 50 kilometer winds in the forecast. that's coming down at 5 centimeters an hour as it pushes overhead. look at the area in the purple, widespread power outages in and across this area very likely. any driving is just being absolutely discouraged here by the national weather service. talk about an ice storm pushing through there. then the severe weather along the gulf coast as that pushes overhead. that's going to be bringing you some hail and very damaging winds. so an all-around very complex storm system to watch out for. any travel plans across the central u.s. is something to watch out for. chicago with a high of minus 1 here on your thursday. washington, d.c. at 4. but atlanta, much warmer there getting up to 15. now we'll take a look across europe really quick, high pressure is dominating much of the british isles and central europe keeping things quiet here. across italy and the balkans, we do have a low pressure system
bringing rain showers and thunderstorm activity near the southern portions of greece. higher elevations will be seeing snow into the alps, but the next storm system is going to be this one coming onshore for portugal and spain. you'll see some widespread wet weather, but also the temperatures are cooling off massachuset. madrid, enjoy the warmer weather. going into sunday your temperature will drop below the freezing mark. that's a look at the world weather. here's a look at the extended forecast.